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State Superintendent Thurmond to Visit RUSD Campuses After RUSD Earns State Green Schools Awards
Posted 7/30/19

State Superintendent Thurmond to visit RUSD Campuses, After RUSD Earns State Green Schools Awards


Rialto, CA — California State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPI), Tony Thurmond, announced the California Department of Education 2019 Green Ribbon Award winners. The winners represent county offices of education, school districts, and schools. The Rialto Unified School District is one of three districts that are receiving the award, joined by Milor High School and Morris Elementary School as two of the 20 schools in the state to receive this distinguished recognition. 


Additionally, Rialto USD has also been nominated to compete in the U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools (ED-GRS) recognition program, which honors schools and districts that conserve resources while promoting health and environmental literacy.


On April 12, 2019, the Rialto Unified School District will host SPI Thurmond, who will formally receive and recognize Green Ribbon School winners from Orange County, Los Angeles County, Riverside County and San Bernardino County.  The event will take place at Morris Elementary School, with site visits to Milor and Rialto High Schools, which showcase the amazing efforts taking place at all three schools that promote environmental literacy: environmental impact, wellness, and sustainability.  


“Congratulations to this year’s honorees,” stated SPI Thurmond. “California Green Ribbon Schools engage our kids to understand and act on behalf of their environment. From global-sized problems like climate change, to local challenges, like water quality, sustainability education grows the creativity, critical thinking skills, and environmental literacy our students need in order to lead now and into the future.”


RUSD is also among one of five California "Green Achievers," the highest honor in the California Green Ribbon Schools recognition program. Green Ribbon Schools demonstrate exemplary achievement in three “pillars.” Pillar I: reduce environmental impact and costs; Pillar II: improve the health and wellness of schools, students, and staff; and Pillar III: provide effective environmental education that teaches many disciplines and is especially good at effectively incorporating STEM education, civic skills, and green career pathways.


“RUSD STEM CARES environmental education program utilizes local relevant phenomena to strengthen the scientific and environmental literacy of all students,” replied Dr. Ed D’Souza, Lead Academic Agent, Math/Science. “Stressing the importance of collaboration and partnership within the District, with local industry and regional government, RUSD has successfully leveraged support for school gardens and groves at every elementary school, wellness gardens, environmentally responsible transportation and energy acquisition for all schools.”


According to the California ED-GRS nomination, RUSD has long prioritized teaching students to be responsible citizens of a global society. This includes being one of the first districts in California to develop and earn University of California approval for courses based on environmental sciences that promote students making “green” college and career choices. RUSD also works on reducing energy and water consumption, supports recycling and composting programs, and purchases and uses environmentally friendly products. RUSD STEM CARES (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Cultivating Active Responsible Environmental Stewards) uses locally relevant environmental issues to inspire students to think globally.


“On behalf of the Board of Education, we look forward in welcoming SPI Thurmond, and leaders who will attend to observe. It’s an extraordinary honor that our educators and students are being recognized at such a significant level,” smiled Rialto USD Superintendent Dr. Cuauhtémoc Avila. “It should be noted that RUSD Science Leads, Facilities, Maintenance and Operation, Grounds, Nutrition Services staff members worked very hard with our school site leaders at Morris and Milor to enhance outdoor learning environments and nourish students with locally sourced fruits and vegetables, bringing the curriculum to life. This is a shared mission and a shared recognition. Being ‘green’ is no longer a cause that our community, especially our students, should observe. It is vital that we take action and provide our students with the resources and the knowledge to guarantee that they have full control of their environmental future.”